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Comment Re:This is stupid ... (Score 1) 143

Reminds me of going to a conference at NIST with a bunch of engineers back when people had watches and didn't have cell phones. At some point everyone looked at the wall clock and thought, "OK that's what time it is... no wait, that's the actually what time it is. I'm going to set my watch." Lots of messing around with the wrist that day.

Comment Re: Damned Lies And Politics (Score 1) 202

There is good sharing and bad sharing. Most of this was instituted after Nixon left office and it was discovered that there was lots of bad sharing. Most of the bad stuff that we know of relates to his monitoring of MLK--I'd look there if you're interested. So, e.g. I doubt the FBI can call the IRS and get tax records without a subpoena. Now, I believe that they do have some common sense sharing rules (e.g. if you list an illegal source of income they send it for prosecution).

In another FBI related one they asked Census for their records on a person of interest and Census said no. Then they asked if they could go to the house with Census badges on and collect the Census data from the person--the Census said no. Then they got a subpoena for the data and Census still said no (you have to give it to the Census workers, it's not easy to stand up to FBI agents with guns AND a subpoena, but they stuck it out and did just that). Census eventually won in court and their records are not shared. A lot of this is that the Census made some big mistakes during WW II and they basically learned their lessons--no privacy, no data. And it takes a long time to build your reputation back up.

Comment Re:Taxi establishment digging its own grave (Score 1) 210

You understand nothing about this situation. NYC taxis do exactly one thing, hailed rides. If you want dispatching, you call a "car service" that costs less than the cab. The reality is that before cell phones and smart phones dispatched cars were just vastly inferior and so weren't that numerous. Now they aren't that bad to use.

The only real regulation that is a pain for the cabs is that a medallion costs about $12/hour (in rent). They are there to keep the number of cars on the street at the correct level. Soon, they will have to be applied to dispatched cars and then uber will enter a new world.

Comment Re:Summary wrong: Uber is NOT being sued (Score 1) 210

NYC has a lot of people in it and the streets are not wide enough to cary a level of traffic that a commuting pattern like another city work work. If you are going to have cars you are going to have to regulate the number. parking costs does that (to an extent) for personal vehicles, but not so for taxis. Medallions are a good thing, they prevent the tragedy of the commons.

Philosophy: A route of many roads leading from nowhere to nothing. -- Ambrose Bierce